Questions From Readers
● After the flood, God told Noah and his sons: “A fear of you and a terror of you will continue upon every living creature of the earth.” (Gen. 9:2) Does this indicate that animals had this fear of man in them before the Flood?
In this verse the Hebrew verb hayáh is in the imperfect state, so it may be rendered with the expressions “will come to be” or “will prove to be” or “will continue to be” with respect to the fear of human creatures upon the animal creation. Which rendering is correct?
According to Genesis 1:26-28, the animal creation was to be in subjection to man from the time of his creation. So the animals had some fear of man even then. Now that the Flood had come and gone this was not to be changed but was to continue.
That the animals, before the Flood, must have had a restraining fear for man is evident from the ark full of animals that Noah arranged for according to God’s will. During the year that Noah and his family were inside the ark, these animals and birds penned up therein had a fear toward these humans. Accordingly when they emerged from the ark after the flood, Jehovah assured Noah and his family that the fear and dread of humans would continue upon every living thing.
Animals, then, would not naturally want to harm mankind. Even today, despite centuries of organized hunting of animals for “sport” and commercial reasons and the general mistreatment of them, they still display this general trait. For example, Dr. George G. Goodwin, Associate Curator of Mammals, The American Museum of Natural History, says: “Normally, a leopard will not attack a man. If provoked or wounded, however, the animal will turn on human beings and fight.” And as to poisonous snakes known for aggressiveness, such as the mamba and king cobra, Raymond L. Ditmars says in Snakes of the World that, if given the opportunity, even these highly dangerous serpents prefer, as a rule, cautiously to glide away from the presence of man rather than attack.
Though man has mistreated and turned some animals into vicious creatures, yet it is still generally true that this restraining fear on the part of animals for man continues down to today.
“HAPPY ARE THE DEAD WHO DIE IN UNION WITH THE LORD”
Drawing great consolation from the written Word of “the God of all comfort,” the Watch Tower Bible & Tract Society of Pennsylvania announces herewith the death of Brother Hugo H. Riemer on March 31, 1965. After years of service as a pioneer publisher in the field, he was called to the Society’s Brooklyn headquarters in 1918, since which time he served with the Society’s headquarters till his death at eighty-six years of age. He was on the boards of directors of both the Society’s Pennsylvania corporation and its New York corporation, also serving in the official capacity of assistant secretary-treasurer of both corporations. Thus, after his dedication to Jehovah God in 1904, he served for the greater part of his long life in the direct, full-time service of his heavenly Father, as one of the anointed remnant of Christ’s followers. After a funeral service attended by 239 on Saturday morning, April 3, interment of his earthly remains took place at the private burial plot of the Brooklyn Bethel family at Huguenot Park, Staten Island, N.Y. We are happy at his entering into the heavenly happiness spoken of in the promise of Revelation 14:13.
HOW WILL GOD SANCTIFY HIS NAME?
Have you ever wondered why Jesus taught us to pray to God, “Hallowed be thy name,” or, “Let your name be sanctified”? Is this just a statement of praise to God on our part? No, there is more to it. Read the 384-page book “Let Your Name Be Sanctified.” Send only 50c.
“WATCHTOWER” STUDIES FOR THE WEEKS
June 20: Settling Difficulties in Christian Love. Page 296.
June 27: Love Gives No Cause for Stumbling. Page 303.